Time-resolved Fourier transform near-infrared (FT-NIR) spectroscopic imaging was applied to the diffusion process of butanol(OD) into polyamide 11 (PA11) with a novel sheet-structured variable-temperature-controlled sample holder in order to demonstrate the significant differences of diffusion rate below and above the glass transition temperature of PA11. The diffusant butanol(OD) was chosen for two reasons: (1) it allows the diffusion front to be monitored by the intensity decrease of a NH-specific absorption band of PA11 due to the NH/ND isotope exchange and (2) under the measurement conditions the diffusion of butanol(OD) into PA11 takes place in an experimentally manageable time frame. Apart from the in situ visualization of the diffusion front in the time-resolved FT-NIR images, the type of diffusion and the diffusion coefficient of butanol(OD) into PA11 have been determined.
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